What is a Firewall?

Nowadays, it is a big challenge to protect our sensitive data from unwanted and unauthorized sources. There are various tools and devices that can provide different security levels and help keep our private data secure. One such tool is a ‘firewall’ that prevents unauthorized access and keeps our computers and data safe and secure.

It is based on a defined set of security rules it accepts, rejects or drops that specific traffic.

Accept:  Allow the traffic
Reject: Block the traffic but reply with an “unreachable error”
Drop:  Block the traffic with no reply

A firewall establishes a barrier between secured internal networks and outside unauthorized networks, such as the Internet. Read More

Why Firewall

Firewalls are primarily used to prevent malware and network-based attacks. Additionally, they can help in blocking application-layer attacks. These firewalls act as a gatekeeper or a barrier. They monitor every attempt between our computer and another network. They do not allow data packets to be transferred through them unless the data is coming or going from a user-specified trusted source.

Firewalls are designed in such a way that they can react quickly to detect and counter-attacks throughout the network. They can work with rules configured to protect the network and perform quick assessments to find any suspicious activity. In short, we can point to the firewall as a traffic controller. Read More

Three Generations of Firewall:

As firewalls have progressed, they’ve gotten more advanced in their functionality and security. The first generation of firewall was connection-oriented, designed to defend against unstructured and non-targeted attacks. The second generation of firewall was content-oriented, designed to defend against single-stage and targeted attacks. And the third generation of firewall is intent-oriented, designed to first determine the intent of an attack, and then leverage the appropriate countermeasures. 

Benefits of Firewall Security:

Firewalls have become so powerful and include a variety of functions and capabilities with built-in features:

  • Network Threat Prevention
  • Application and Identity-Based Control
  • Hybrid Cloud Support
  • Scalable Performance
  • Network Traffic Management and Control
  • Access Validation
  • Record and Report on Events

Limitations of Firewall:

The importance of using firewalls as a security system is obvious; however, firewalls have some limitations:

  • Firewalls cannot stop users from accessing malicious websites, making it vulnerable to internal threats or attacks.
  • Firewalls cannot protect against the transfer of virus-infected files or software.
  • Firewalls cannot prevent misuse of passwords.
  • Firewalls cannot protect if security rules are misconfigured.
  • Firewalls cannot protect against non-technical security risks, such as social engineering.
  • Firewalls cannot stop or prevent attackers with modems from dialing into or out of the internal network.
  • Firewalls cannot secure the system which is already infected.

Therefore, it is recommended to keep all Internet-enabled devices updated. This includes the latest operating systems, web browsers, applications and other security software (such as anti-virus). Read More